On Fallujah

We received this from a colleague on the east coast:

What happened yesterday was absolutely ghastly. The Administration terribly miscalculated the aftermath of the war and as a result four American civilians, good and decent people who were only trying to help the Iraqis, died a horrible death. Unfortunately, we are now subject to the rule of "You broke it, you bought it," and I don't see that we have any choice but to stay and clean up our mess.

But some are taking the wrong message from this. Driving to work today I listened to a conservative talk radio host ranting about "what kind of people burn corpses and string them up from bridges?" You see where this is going, don't you? Because I couldn't help but thinking -- not so long ago, within my lifetime, it was American people who did EXACTLY the same thing to black men. A simple Google images search on "lynching" returns dozens of pictures just as frightful as what we saw yesterday, including tortured and mutilated black bodies hanging before crowds of well-dressed whites.

This sort of inhumanity is inexcusable and incomprehensible whenever it happens. But let's not suggest that the Iraqis who did this are a different breed from us, or there is something unique about Islam or Arabs that leads to cruelty.

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